More businesses have moved online over the past year alone than in the last decade.
The pandemic has shown us all that ‘work’ does not have to be restricted to a 9 to 5 office job; for most industries, ‘work’ can happen from anywhere. As a result, many companies have combined remote work with time in the office to create a more flexible hybrid working model.
Even now that things are returning to ‘normal’, one thing is clear: hybrid working is here to stay. And with more and more organizations seeking international expansion, hybrid working will play a pivotal part in the global businesses of the future.
But although this new way of working offers many benefits, it’s not without challenges. So, how can companies ensure a slick hybrid model that gives employees the ultimate work-life balance without compromising productivity? Technology.
The latest tech you need to know about
If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the past year, it’s that technology is critical for business continuity. And those companies that embraced modern technologies — or better yet, had already adopted them — have certainly had a smoother ride.
Growing a global business is no mean feat, but technology absolutely makes it easier. Getting the right tech in place is key to ensuring employees can seamlessly switch from one work environment to another.
Let’s take a closer look at four emerging technologies organizations should prioritize to improve workflow, keep colleagues connected across all locations and help them thrive in the ‘new normal’…
What’s the best way to tackle repetitive and mundane daily tasks? Automate them! Thanks to robotic process automation (RPA), it’s now easier for businesses to use and manage ‘software robots that can identify and extract data, navigate systems and perform a wide range of defined actions just like a human does. Only they’ll do it faster and more consistently than human workers — and won’t need to take a coffee break.
Not only can robotic process automation streamline workflows — in turn making global businesses more flexible, responsive, and profitable — but it can also improve employee productivity, satisfaction, and engagement by eliminating mundane tasks from their workdays.
Now, we’re even starting to see this tech move from task-based automation to process-based automation, amplifying the magnitude of automation.
2. Hybrid devices
If employees are working in a hybrid way, it makes sense that the devices they use to carry out this work are also hybrid. When staff are working from multiple locations — frequently changing their desk view from the home to the office to the coffee shop — they don’t want to be lugging around heavy equipment or multiple devices.
Fortunately, manufacturers have cottoned on to changing consumer demands and have started creating small, light, and effective hybrid devices, such as Samsung’s Galaxy Fold 2, which doubles up as a phone and a tablet.
3. Employee experience platforms
With some workers heading back to the office, others staying at home, and some mixing up their location daily, it’ll be vital for organizations to connect their teams — no matter where in the country or the world they are.
Employee experience platforms (EXP) can help global businesses connect with employees and keep them engaged by providing recommendations based on surveys, text analytics, sentiment analysis, and workplace application monitoring.
EXP aren’t new, but the demands that are now being placed on them are — which means the tech will need to progress as hybrid working becomes the new norm. And businesses will need to update their software to keep up.
4. Hybrid cloud models
You’ve probably heard of ‘the Cloud’. But what about ‘the Hybrid Cloud’? Cloud team management is essential for global businesses with workers spread across various locations.
But now, most businesses are shifting towards the more convenient hybrid model that strikes a balance between on-premises data centers (also called a private cloud) with a public cloud, allowing data and applications to be shared between them.
With a hybrid cloud infrastructure, global businesses can instantly scale capacity up or down to handle excess capacity — ideal when it comes to international expansion.
As the world opens up again, technology will be vital for global businesses looking to expand internationally. To find out more about what hybrid working means for your worldwide teams, get in touch with PEO Worldwide today.